The following statement has been released by PennFuture President and CEO Jacquelyn Bonomo, in regards to Governor Wolf’s executive order initiating a process to add Pennsylvania to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
“PennFuture strongly supports Governor Wolf’s intention for Pennsylvania to join the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI),” said Jacquelyn Bonomo, President and CEO of PennFuture. “This is the most significant step Pennsylvania has taken to cut its fair share of carbon pollution, and it shows real leadership from Harrisburg.”
The executive order instructs the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to develop a proposed rulemaking by July through which Pennsylvania would join RGGI, an organization of ten northeastern and mid-Atlantic states working cooperatively under one unified carbon cap and market to reduce emissions and invest in clean energy technologies. DEP will then have up to 24 months to complete the rulemaking and officially join RGGI, though it’s possible the process could take less time.
This rulemaking, while important to meeting our climate goals, is an important part of a larger suite of policies needed to meet those goals. Joining RGGI will create a significant revenue stream for the state, and it is crucial that the Legislature work with Governor Wolf to ensure this money is invested wisely. At a minimum, Pennsylvania should consider funding to incentivize energy efficiency and new sources of clean renewable energy, to preserve existing zero-carbon generation, to lessen the energy burden on low and moderate-income families, and to ready our infrastructure to support clean electric vehicles.
“This executive order marks an urgency and inflection point in Pennsylvania energy policy. It signals that we’re no longer beholden to fossil fuel industries and are getting serious about chartering a new, clean, economically sustainable future,” Bonomo said.